Grilled Chicken Salad
Published Jul 14, 2023, Updated Sep 27, 2023
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My go-to grilled chicken salad made with juicy marinated chicken, fresh veggies, grilled corn, roasted sweet potatoes and avocado all served over greens and topped with a homemade honey mustard dressing.
I’m excited because today I’m sharing my go-to grilled chicken salad recipe! This is a salad I’ve been making for years, but I’ve never gotten around to sharing the full recipe… until today.
This salad has a great balance of lean protein, healthy fats and veggies which makes it an awesome meal-sized salad for lunch or dinner. Plus it’s so easy to make and can easily be customized! And don’t even get me started on the honey mustard dressing… it’s definitely what takes this salad to the next level, IMO!
Why You’ll Love This Grilled Chicken Salad
- Flavor-packed: The addition of roasted sweet potatoes, marinated grilled chicken and a honey mustard dressing adds so much flavor to this salad!
- Protein-rich: Grilled chicken adds lean protein and turns this into a meal-sized salad!
- Versatile: You can customize this salad to your liking, adding or subtracting ingredients as you please.
- Meal-prep friendly: Prep components of this salad ahead of time for easy lunches or dinners throughout the week.
- Balanced: This salad has a good mix of veggies, protein, carbs and healthy fats, making it a nutritious salad choice.
- grilled chicken – we’re using my easy grilled chicken breast recipe for the protein in this salad! All you have to do is make a simple marinade, let the chicken marinate for 1-12 hours and grill it up! The end result is chicken breasts that are juicy, tender and packed with flavor.
- romaine lettuce – the base of this salad! The romaine adds a nice crunch and pairs well with the rest of the ingredients.
- cucumber – adds a refreshing crunch.
- cherry tomatoes – these add a slightly sweet flavor and pop of color.
- red onion – adds a pungent and slightly spicy element.
- grilled corn – adds a slight sweetness and smokiness to the salad.
- roasted sweet potatoes – I followed my recipe for roasted sweet potatoes. I love adding some roasted veggies to my salads! You can also make these sweet potato croutons instead, which are bite-sized and a tad crunchy.
- avocado – adds creaminess and some healthy fats to this salad.
- honey mustard dressing – this honey mustard dressing is one of my faves! It’s made with simple ingredients like dijon mustard, lemon juice, olive oil, apple cider vinegar and spices. Its sweet and tangy notes complement the flavors of the chicken and veggies brilliantly.
How to Make
Marinate chicken: Start by whisking together vinegar, oil, garlic powder, thyme, oregano, salt and black pepper in a small bowl until well combined. Then, place the chicken in a shallow dish or a sealable plastic bag. Add the marinade to the chicken, toss to coat, and refrigerate for at least one hour or up to 12 hours.
Make dressing + prepare veggies: While the chicken is marinating, make your dressing and prep the remaining ingredients for the salad.
Grill chicken: Remove the chicken from the marinade, shaking off the excess and discarding the leftover marinade. Heat a grill or grill pan and once hot, place chicken breasts on the grill grates. Cook the chicken for about 5 minutes per side, or until it’s cooked through and no longer pink. You want to check the internal temperature of the chicken with a meat thermometer to make sure it’s at 165°F.
Assemble salad: To assemble the salad, start with a bed of romaine lettuce in two bowls. Top the lettuce with cucumber, tomatoes, onion, corn, roasted sweet potatoes, avocado and the sliced grilled chicken breast. Drizzle honey mustard dressing over the top and enjoy!
Customize Your Salad
One of the reasons I love this salad is how customizable it is! Here are some suggestions for variations and substitutions:
- Switch up the greens – if you’re not a fan of romaine lettuce, you can substitute it with mixed salad greens, spinach, kale or arugula.
- Swap the protein – you can easily swap this grilled chicken with another protein like steak, grilled shrimp, crispy baked tofu, tempeh, apple cider vinegar chicken or roasted chickpeas.
- Switch up the veggies – feel free to switch up the vegetables based on what you have on hand or what’s in season. Bell peppers, radishes, carrots, broccoli would be great additions.
- Make this dairy-free and vegan – simply skip the feta cheese or use vegan feta cheese like this Follow Your Heart dairy-free vegan crumbles or VIOLIFE Just Like Feta Block.
- Add grains – I love adding grains to my salad for some extra volume and nutrients. Toss in cooked quinoa, rice or farro to make this a heartier salad.
- Add nuts or seeds – want to add some crunch? Add chopped almonds, walnuts or pecans. If you have a nut allergy add seeds like sunflower seeds or pepitas.
- Switch up the dressing – craving a different dressing? This creamy poppyseed dressing, red wine vinaigrette, white balsamic vinaigrette, lemon vinaigrette, avocado ranch dressing or creamy balsamic vinaigrette would be delicious on this salad!
How to Prep in Advance
If you want the real deal but don’t have time to make everything for this grilled chicken salad in one night, you can prep all of the components in advance for faster assembly. Here’s what I would prep in advance:
- Chicken – you can either make the marinade the night before you want to make these salads and let the chicken sit overnight. Then cook the chicken when you’re ready to make dinner. Or you can cook the chicken 1-3 days prior for quicker assembly.
- Roasted sweet potatoes – these sweet potatoes are hands-off once they’re roasting, but it does take a little time to cook. Make a batch at the beginning of the week and use all week long!
- Honey mustard dressing – another simple component to prep in advance!
How to Store Leftovers
I recommend storing each component in separate containers. That way your lettuce won’t get soggy. Everything should last 4-5 days in the refrigerator. When you’re ready to enjoy, heat up the chicken and sweet potatoes (or enjoy them cold) and assemble your salad!
Popular Salad Recipes to Try
- Tuna Salad
- Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad
- Pistachio Salmon Salad
- BBQ Chicken Salad
- Blackened Chicken Cobb Salad
- Mandarin Orange Chicken Salad
- Mediterranean Salmon Salad
- Grilled Salmon Salad with Peaches and Corn
- Roasted Broccoli Quinoa Salad
- Greek Pasta Salad
- Poppy Seed Chicken Pasta Salad
- Jennifer Aniston Salad
Grilled Chicken Salad
- 1- 1 ¼ lb boneless chicken breasts
- 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar or lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Whisk vinegar, oil, garlic powder, thyme, oregano, salt and pepper in a small bowl until well combined.
- Place chicken in a shallow dish or 1-gallon sealable plastic bag. Add the marinade, toss to coat and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours.
- While chicken is marinating, make dressing and prep remaining ingredients.
- Remove chicken from the marinade, shake off excess and discard leftover marinade. Heat a grill or grill pan. Once hot, place the chicken on the grill and cook for about 5 minutes per side, or until cooked through and no longer pink. You want the internal chicken temperature to be 165F.
- Assemble salad by adding a bed of romaine lettuce to two bowls. Top with cucumber, tomatoes, onion, corn, sweet potatoes, avocado and sliced chicken breast. Drizzle with dressing and enjoy!
- Roasted sweet potatoes: Feel free to make these sweet potato croutons instead if you prefer.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.